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Coronavirus | Inquiry into ‘dumping’ of COVID-19 patient by ambulance on Bhopal pavement

Representational image

Representational image   | Photo Credit: A. M. Faruqui

The Bhopal district administration has initiated a magisterial inquiry into an incident wherein a patient who suffered from COVID-19 and later died was reportedly left on the pavement outside a private hospital here for more than an hour on Monday night.

Describing the incident as “unfortunate”, Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan on Tuesday issued directions for an inquiry. He said the episode was inhumane and condemnable, and action would be taken against those responsible, according to the State Public Relations Department.

The man was undergoing treatment at Peoples Hospital for nearly two weeks for kidney ailment and had tested positive for COVID-19 on Monday night. An ambulance from Chirayu Hospital, a dedicated COVID-19 facility, arrived to take him there, but on the way returned to Peoples Hospital, where it left the man on the pavement.

Bhopal District Collector Avinash Lavania said, “The inquiry would look into why the patient was referred to another hospital, and whether rules relating to shifting of patients were followed and family members were informed, among other issues. We will take further action after the inquiry.”

The man’s son has accused both the hospitals of negligence in his father’s death. “Strict action must be taken against them. Both of them didn’t inform us about the shifting and that he had been dumped on the pavement like this,” he said.

An official at Chirayu Hospital has contended the ambulance had returned as the patient immediately needed ventilator support and reaching the hospital, on the outskirts of the city, would have taken time given the traffic. “But Peoples Hospital refused to take him back. Our staff took the right decision. Bringing him to us would have consumed crucial time,” he said.

Whereas, Peoples Hospital has claimed they advised the ambulance against the return as its ICU had already been sealed and was being sanitised according to the protocol for he was its first COVID-19 patient.

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Printable version | Aug 10, 2020 6:56:51 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/inquiry-into-dumping-of-covid-19-patient-by-ambulance-on-bhopal-pavement/article32021933.ece

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